Timothy Hutton once said that the most important lesson he learned about acting was from his father, actor Jim Hutton. When Jim was working and things were going well, he was happy; when things weren't going well, he was still happy because he had such a great appreciation for just being in the business. Actors in general don't get into the business to get rich, and most, do not stay in the business purely because of the money they make.
Towards the end of his interview on Inside the Actors Studio, Kevin Spacey was asked by a student of the New School for Social Research to help them appreciate the early process, the lean, very difficult years leading up to the ultimate prize. Spacey responded, "There is no ultimate prize…out there. The only prize is this one (pointing to his heart), and what you feel and what you want to accomplish. And if you can, as you start out, these, what could be lean years, could be fat years, I feel that very often I watch a lot of you people sort of meander around without any idea about why they're doing what they're doing. I mean to want and to be ambitious and to want to be successful is not enough. That's just desire.
To know what you want, to understand why you're doing it. To dedicate every breath in your body to achieve, if you feel that your particular talent is worth developing, is worth caring for, then there's nothing you can't achieve. You're going to grow up with your
colleagues. You're going to watch them have success and have failure and you're going to watch how they deal with it and they can be as much a teacher for you as anybody here, or anyone who's privileged enough to come here and speak to you."
From Script to Screen : The Collaborative Art of Filmmaking by Linda Seger,
Edward Jay Whetmore
The Film Producer : A Handbook for Producing by Paul N. Lazarus
Directing Actors : Creating Memorable Performances for Film and Television by
The Cinema of Oliver Stone by Norman Kagan
Breaking into Film : Making Your Career Search a Blockbuster by Kenna McHugh
Acting is Everything by Judy Kerr
Directing the Film : Film Directors on Their Art by Eric Sherman
Interpreting the Moving Image (Cambridge Studies in Film) by Noel Carroll
Back To One : The Complete Movie Extra Guidebook, The Millennium Edition by
The Back Stage Handbook for Performing Artists : The How-To and who-To-Contact
Reference for Actors, Singers, and Dancers by Sherry Eaker
The New York Agent Book: 6th Edition, Get the Agent You Need for the Career You
Want by K. Callan
Acting for the Camera by Tony Barr, Eric Stephan Kline, Edward Asner
Audition by Michael Shurtleff, Bob Fosse
Building a Character by Constantine Stanislavski, Elizabeth Reynolds Hapgood,